Rebels returned last night with ‘A Princess on Lothal,’ and on Rebels Recon, Andi Gutierrez discusses bringing Princess Leia to the show with Henry Gilroy, Dave Filoni and Pablo Hidalgo. Also, a B-wing question!
Jedi Bibliothek was first to spot two upcoming Star Wars coffee table books from Becker & Mayer. Both appear in the book producer’s 2015 autumn catalog (PDF) so we can probably expect them in the fall.
The first, On the Front Lines: Notes on Tactics, Armor and Valor from Galactic Conflicts is a look at warfare in the GFFA from Daniel Wallace. Here’s the blurb:
From the Clone Wars and the Rebellion to the clashes with the First Order, the galaxy is defined by war. Star Wars: On the Front Lines chronicles the tactics, weapons, and armor used in pivotal battles along with profiling acts of valor. By focusing on elements of the battles that occurred “off screen,” this collection brings the struggles faced by ground soldiers and starfighter pilots to life like never before and places the reader on the battle lines.
The second is the “in-universe” Star Wars: Propaganda from Pablo Hidalgo.
Whether it’s a Star Destroyer hovering over a planet or an X-wing delivering a message of resistance, propaganda images have become synonymous with life in the galaxy far, far away. This in-world art book explores the creation and stories behind these images of power and persuasion—where the images appeared, why particular planets were targeted, and who were the in-world artists behind the works.
Also featured in the catalog are a trade edition of last year’s Star Wars: Costumes and several crafting titles.
Earlier, Jedi Bibliothek also discovered covers and details for The Force Awakens Storybook (among others) and Landry Quinn Walker’s Tales From A Galaxy Far Far Away: Aliens. (Aliens collects the eBook short stories released last month, and is supposed to contain two new stories.)
These last two scheduled for early April releases, which lines up with the Blu-ray evidence.
The Force Awakens novelization by Alan Dean Foster has made it to #1 on the the New York Times bestseller list, Lucasfilm’s Jennifer Heddle announced today.
The novelization was released in two phases – as an ebook on December 18th, with the hardcover not debuting until January 5.
(Pablo Hidalgo’s The Force Awakens Visual Dictionary has also been doing well, and is probably the most helpful resource out there right now.)
Despite over 20 years of the current publishing program, only 3 previous Star Wars novels have topped the NYT list: Timothy Zahn’s Heir the the Empire in 1991, Terry Brooks’ The Phantom Menace novelization in 1999 and Sean Williams’ The Force Unleashed novelization in 2008. Quite a few have made the top ten, with Chuck Wendig’s Aftermath recently peaking at #4.
Episode VII could have had a title that echoed one of the dregs of the early Expanded Universe. “It was Shadow (singular) of the Empire for a while,” Pablo Hidalgo tweeted Friday. “With so many books, it’s inevitable,” he said earlier. And that’s true enough: The Force Awakens itself is a title reminiscent of the 2008 video game The Force Unleashed.
But unlike TFU, Shadows of the Empire hails from the mid-90s, when all the franchise’s new content was in the form of books, comics and games. In fact, the 1996 Shadows storyline was used as a marketing test-run for The Phantom Menace – it had a novel, video game, comic, toys and even a soundtrack. As such, it has lingered on in fan memories to the point where it’s not unusual for some to think it’s still canon.
Having Episode VII reuse a form of that title would have muddied the well considerably, even if the two had nothing in common other than a handful of characters. The key fact: Shadows was set between The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. It’s not an Expanded Universe entry anyone could ever actually mistake for an Episode VII contender.
(Shadows certainly has a following, but it has never been a personal or CJ favorite – I recommend listening to this relevant episode of Full of Sith if you need a primer on why. It’s oh so very ’90s.)
Will we see Shadow of the Empire as a title again? We might! It could certainly fit the new era, but I’m very glad Episode VII became The Force Awakens instead.
In an interview with IGN, J.J. Abrams is surprisingly candid about Kylo Ren, how exactly he idolizes Darth Vader, and why he turned to the dark side.
At Birth. Movies. Death., Siddhant Adlakha explores why Kylo is such a great villain, and how he works as a metaphor for Abrams himself.
And for those who wonder, Pablo Hidalgo himself on Kylo’s age.
‘Legacy’ is the mid-season finale of Rebels, and Andi talks to Pablo Hidalgo, Henry Gilroy and Dave Filoni about Ezra’s parents and Rebel bases. Pablo answers a question on Ezra’s abilities, and we even get some hints for the rest of the season.
→ J.J. Abrams talks to io9 about the script process (including Michael Arndt’s exit,) starting fresh with Lawrence Kasdan and even the Expanded Universe. (On that note, The Hollywood Reporter on the pre-Abrams story meetings.) At Nerdist, he says he wants to see Selma’s Ava DuVernay do a Star Wars film. She seems game! And Pablo Hidalgo’s fame continues to spread, as he’s the subject of the first question from the Associated Press.
→ Daisy Ridley and John Boyega are in the New York Times! With the AP, John shares the story of how (and why) he got Robert Downey Jr. as his mentor in fame. But he couldn’t resist getting a little saucy about Star Trek with Yahoo. (Well, about William Shatner, technically. Which is, I believe, legal under the Carrie Directive)
→ It was Oscar Isaac’s turn on Good Morning America today, where he talked about flying an X-wing.
→ A film still of Billie Lourd in the movie has been floating around for a while now (plus she was in one of the first TV spots) but People has an official character portrait, in which we can see she wears her hair in a toned-down version of Leia’s iconic buns. Still no character name, though.
→ J.J. Abrams, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega and Adam Driver were in Seoul today goofing around, while Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o and Kathleen Kennedy were in Mexico City. I can’t find any reports in English, but damn they looked cool.
→ Also: The Force Awakens was the #1 movie on Facebook for 2015; Yesterday’s spoilerific Rey action figure got DMCA’d; NASA scientist would pick Threepio over BB-8 or Artoo to take to space. I am outraged! I have to go lay down now.
It’s the least mysterious Inquisitor plotline yet in ‘The Future of the Force’. Plus, Pablo Hidalgo, Henry Gilroy and Dave Filoni discuss Ahsoka’s lightsaber skills. (And promise more swordfights.) Plus a question about timekeeping in the GFFA.
Andi talks to Pablo Hidalgo, Dave Filoni, Henry Gilroy and Dee Bradley Baker about tonight’s ‘Stealth Strike’. Plus, Pablo answers a question about Sabine.
We met the B-wing in tonight’s ‘Wings of the Master’, and Andi has the behind the scenes scoop with Pablo Hidalgo, Dave Filoni, and Vanessa Marshall.